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Jeremiah 8 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Death over Life

“At that time”—this is the Lord’s declaration—“the bones of the kings of Judah, the bones of her officials, the bones of the priests, the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the residents of Jerusalem will be brought out of their graves. They will be exposed to the sun, the moon, and all the stars in the sky, which they have loved, served, followed, consulted, and worshiped. Their bones will not be collected and buried but will become like manure on the soil’s surface. Death will be chosen over life by all the survivors of this evil family, those who remain wherever I have banished them.” This is the declaration of the Lord of Armies.

“You are to say to them: This is what the Lord says:

Do people fall and not get up again?
If they turn away, do they not return?
Why have these people turned away?
Why is Jerusalem always turning away?
They take hold of deceit;
they refuse to return.
I have paid careful attention.
They do not speak what is right.
No one regrets his evil,
asking, ‘What have I done?’
Everyone has stayed his course
like a horse rushing into battle.
Even storks in the sky
know their seasons.
Turtledoves, swallows, and cranes[a]
are aware of their migration,
but my people do not know
the requirements of the Lord.

Punishment for Judah’s Leaders

“How can you claim, ‘We are wise;
the law of the Lord is with us’?
In fact, the lying pen of scribes
has produced falsehood.
The wise will be put to shame;
they will be dismayed and snared.
They have rejected the word of the Lord,
so what wisdom do they really have?
10 Therefore, I will give their wives to other men,
their fields to new occupants,
for from the least to the greatest,
everyone is making profit dishonestly.
From prophet to priest,
everyone deals falsely.
11 They have treated the brokenness
of my dear[b] people superficially,
claiming, ‘Peace, peace,’
when there is no peace.
12 Were they ashamed when they acted so detestably?
They weren’t at all ashamed.
They can no longer feel humiliation.
Therefore, they will fall among the fallen.
When I punish them, they will collapse,”
says the Lord.

13 I will gather them and bring them to an end.[c]
This is the Lord’s declaration.
There will be no grapes on the vine,
no figs on the fig tree,
and even the leaf will wither.
Whatever I have given them will be lost to them.

God’s People Unrepentant

14 Why are we just sitting here?
Gather together; let us enter the fortified cities
and perish there,[d]
for the Lord our God has destroyed[e] us.
He has given us poisoned water to drink,
because we have sinned against the Lord.
15 We hoped for peace, but there was nothing good;
for a time of healing, but there was only terror.

16 From Dan, the snorting of horses is heard.
At the sound of the neighing of mighty steeds,
the whole land quakes.
They come to devour the land and everything in it,
the city and all its residents.
17 Indeed, I am about to send snakes among you,
poisonous vipers that cannot be charmed.
They will bite you.
This is the Lord’s declaration.

Lament over Judah

18 My joy has flown away;
grief has settled on me.
My heart is sick.
19 Listen—the cry of my dear people
from a faraway land,
“Is the Lord no longer in Zion,
her King not within her?”
Why have they angered me
with their carved images,
with their worthless foreign idols?
20 Harvest has passed, summer has ended,
but we have not been saved.
21 I am broken by the brokenness
of my dear people.
I mourn; horror has taken hold of me.
22 Is there no balm in Gilead?
Is there no physician there?
So why has the healing of my dear people
not come about?

Footnotes:

  1. 8:7 Hb obscure
  2. 8:11 Lit of the daughter of my, also in vv. 19,21,22
  3. 8:13 Lit Gathering I will end them
  4. 8:14 Or there be silenced
  5. 8:14 Or silenced
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

Jeremiah 8 New International Version (NIV)

“‘At that time, declares the Lord, the bones of the kings and officials of Judah, the bones of the priests and prophets, and the bones of the people of Jerusalem will be removed from their graves. They will be exposed to the sun and the moon and all the stars of the heavens, which they have loved and served and which they have followed and consulted and worshiped. They will not be gathered up or buried, but will be like dung lying on the ground. Wherever I banish them, all the survivors of this evil nation will prefer death to life, declares the Lord Almighty.’

Sin and Punishment

“Say to them, ‘This is what the Lord says:

“‘When people fall down, do they not get up?
    When someone turns away, do they not return?
Why then have these people turned away?
    Why does Jerusalem always turn away?
They cling to deceit;
    they refuse to return.
I have listened attentively,
    but they do not say what is right.
None of them repent of their wickedness,
    saying, “What have I done?”
Each pursues their own course
    like a horse charging into battle.
Even the stork in the sky
    knows her appointed seasons,
and the dove, the swift and the thrush
    observe the time of their migration.
But my people do not know
    the requirements of the Lord.

“‘How can you say, “We are wise,
    for we have the law of the Lord,”
when actually the lying pen of the scribes
    has handled it falsely?
The wise will be put to shame;
    they will be dismayed and trapped.
Since they have rejected the word of the Lord,
    what kind of wisdom do they have?
10 Therefore I will give their wives to other men
    and their fields to new owners.
From the least to the greatest,
    all are greedy for gain;
prophets and priests alike,
    all practice deceit.
11 They dress the wound of my people
    as though it were not serious.
“Peace, peace,” they say,
    when there is no peace.
12 Are they ashamed of their detestable conduct?
    No, they have no shame at all;
    they do not even know how to blush.
So they will fall among the fallen;
    they will be brought down when they are punished,
says the Lord.

13 “‘I will take away their harvest,
declares the Lord.
    There will be no grapes on the vine.
There will be no figs on the tree,
    and their leaves will wither.
What I have given them
    will be taken from them.[a]’”

14 Why are we sitting here?
    Gather together!
Let us flee to the fortified cities
    and perish there!
For the Lord our God has doomed us to perish
    and given us poisoned water to drink,
    because we have sinned against him.
15 We hoped for peace
    but no good has come,
for a time of healing
    but there is only terror.
16 The snorting of the enemy’s horses
    is heard from Dan;
at the neighing of their stallions
    the whole land trembles.
They have come to devour
    the land and everything in it,
    the city and all who live there.

17 “See, I will send venomous snakes among you,
    vipers that cannot be charmed,
    and they will bite you,”
declares the Lord.

18 You who are my Comforter[b] in sorrow,
    my heart is faint within me.
19 Listen to the cry of my people
    from a land far away:
“Is the Lord not in Zion?
    Is her King no longer there?”

“Why have they aroused my anger with their images,
    with their worthless foreign idols?”

20 “The harvest is past,
    the summer has ended,
    and we are not saved.”

21 Since my people are crushed, I am crushed;
    I mourn, and horror grips me.
22 Is there no balm in Gilead?
    Is there no physician there?
Why then is there no healing
    for the wound of my people?

Footnotes:

  1. Jeremiah 8:13 The meaning of the Hebrew for this sentence is uncertain.
  2. Jeremiah 8:18 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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